151: Dance On

Lovesexy (1988)
The Lovesexy album is a kaleidoscope of intricate wonder but at the midpoint sits a sparse and jarring track – the machine gun funk of Dance On. Sheila E’s drum beat (possibly cut up and rearranged by Prince’s sampler) is too angular to hang anything off except the most bowel-loosening bass rumble. And with the lyrics forgoing the album’s celebratory brief to paint a picture of societal decay, you realise the song has its sights on becoming Sign O’ the Times part 2. Dance On is skittish and awkward and moves like a brick in a washing machine, yet against all known physics it’s also deeply funky. If you’re dancing to it you need a 5th dimension to fully do it justice.